Press Release


The Board of Trustees of the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Foundation has met under the chairmanship of Mr. Iñigo Urkullu, Lehendakari (Basque premier). In attendance were Mr. Unai Rementeria, Deputy-General for Bizkaia and Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Foundation; Mr. Bingen Zupiria, Councillor for Culture and Linguistic Policy of the Basque Government; Ms. Lorea Bilbao, Regional Deputy for Basque Language, Culture and Sport; Mr. Juan María Aburto, Mayor of Bilbao; representatives of the firms and institutions that form part of the Board of the Foundation (some online); and the Directors of the Guggenheim Museums of New York and Bilbao, Mr. Richard Armstrong (online) and Mr. Juan Ignacio Vidarte.

The meeting began with a survey of the activity over the past year, which has seen the number of visitors rise to the current figure of 1,247,599, 55% above the estimate for this period and more than double the number accumulated at the same date in 2021. The positive trend has been maintained throughout the year, with the exhibition Motion. Autos, Art, Architecture registering more than 750,000 visits in five months, and the summer of 2022 ranking as the summer season with the highest visitor numbers in history. Over the months, the percentage of foreign visitors, which fell drastically during the pandemic, has been recovering, and currently represents 54% of the total.

As regards collectives linked to the Museum, Community (the community centered on art and culture, which groups the Museum Members and Followers and the beneficiaries of the ERDU program, among others) has registered the involvement of more than 183,000 people, with over 22,000 Museum Members and doubling the number of Followers in comparison with the close of 2021.

The positive growth of the operating profits obtained by the Museum (entrance fees, sales at the Store/Bookstore, and sponsorships) has permitted a 1,500,000 euro reduction in public subsidies, a sum which the Institutions will use for the purchase of artworks.

In this session, the budget for the 2023 tax year was approved on the basis of an estimated total of 950,000 visitors. The operating budget comes to 32,665,379 euros, 8.1% more than last year, owing among other reasons to increased energy costs and a rise in the CPI.

Also approved in this meeting was the artistic program for 2023, which will feature great figures of modern and contemporary art. It begins on February 10 with Joan Miró. Absolute Reality. Paris, 1920–1945, a fundamental period in Miró’s career, to continue on March 17 with a major retrospective on the Austrian artist Oskar Kokoschka, and with a presentation of recent work by the British artist Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, which can be seen from March 31 to September 10. On June 27, the Museum will host an exhibition on the Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama, which will provide an in-depth survey of her life and long artistic career, while Picasso. Matter and Body, a show on Picasso’s sculptural production, will open on September 29 as part of the commemorations of the 50th anniversary of the artist’s death. The recent practice of Marine Hugonnier, a French artist based in London, can be seen in the Film & Video gallery of the Museum from October 27, while a retrospective on the work of the German-Venezuelan artist Gego, which will trace the development of this artist’s singular approach to abstraction, will be inaugurated on November 3. The 2023 program will be completed with the presentation of Works from the Collection of the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao.

Also presented in this session was a report on progress in the implementation of the Strategic Plan for 2021–23 and its scheduled commitments in areas like digital transformation, education and public programs, projects related to environmental sustainability, the latest advances in studies on the project for the discontinuous extension of the Museum in Urdaibai, and the commemorative events of the 25th Anniversary.

In this respect, the Museum has shared all kinds of initiatives with local citizens throughout the year, encompassing disciplines like art, music, literature, architecture, science, dance, performance, and theater. The grand finale was Immersions, an extraordinary spectacle of enveloping sound and light projections that was enjoyed by approximately 50,000 spectators in the Atrium. As a continuation of Reflections, it brought the story of the Museum and the city inside the building.

Images of the exhibitions 2023


This website uses cookies to enhance your browsing experience and provide a more personalized service. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to accept our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings or receive more information by reading our Cookies policy.